Ang and Pete are big fans of the fishing that the Algoma region of Ontario has to offer. Let’s face it—with great scenery, thousands of bodies of water, multiple fish species and an array of great lodges, who wouldn’t be?
They are also big fans of the people in the area...hardcore outdoors people! They love fishing, hunting, camping, hiking, kayaking...you name it, they do it.
The trip commenced from a previous shoot in Northwest Ontario so it involved a drive east and south on Hwy 17 to White River and then a turn north on to Hornepayne.
After a good night’s sleep in White River, the boys woke up to a constant misty and rainy morning... not conducive to safe flying. After a quick breakfast, they ventured north on Hwy 631.
"This was the best part of the drive," says Pete. "We saw two gorgeous bull moose along the highway...a real bonus in such rugged terrain."
The bad weather stayed relentless; it just would not stop! They puttered around the thriving metropolis of their departure point of Hornepayne (not many Timmy’s in that area) and eventually made their way to Forde Air Base.
After what seemed like an eternity, the pilot finally said it was safe to fly.
Upon arrival to one of the fully appointed Bingwood log cabins, the entire team unloaded the gear and had a chance to hit the water for a few hours. Unfortunately, the rain never really left and thus, the camera pretty much stayed in the bag.
"When weather like this happens," says Ang, "Pete and I don’t take the day off. Instead we tell the camera operators to sit tight and make sure all the gear is ready to go while we go check out the fishing."
“We covered a ton of water,” says Pete, “but couldn’t put together anything solid... not really what we anticipated but we knew that the potential for greatness could be right around the corner.”
Little did the guys know that they would find greatness in an area called Witches Nose.
“At the Forde Air Base,” says Ang, “we met a departing customer flying out from Buck Lake Lodge and all he said to us was 'Witches Nose'...hmm.”
On that wet and windy day Ang and Pete definitely found fish at Witches... unfortunately, they were the wrong species. It was loaded with northern pike in around 12 feet of water...a preferred walleye depth given to us by the locals.
“Finding pike isn’t necessarily a bad thing,” says Pete, “especially when a couple of them bent Ang’s stick almost completely over...he broke off two giants in short order. Eight-pound flouro with no wire leader on medium action spinning gear usually doesn’t have a chance!”
“If lots of pike are present,” continues Ang, “then bait must also be there...oh yeah, and walleye too!”
Day Two found the guys waking up to almost the identical weather as Evening One; lots of rain and of course, strong winds! With that, again the camera was left in the bag for about 90% of the day. The guys did, however, get to chart some great-looking water, really defining specific structures.
On Day Three (their final day), the skies somewhat parted but the temperatures were nothing short of “make sure you wear every piece of warm clothing you have.” It was one of those mornings.
After a chilly boat ride back to Witches Nose, Ang and Pete immediately started catching quality walleye in around 16 feet of water. They knew that 12 feet deep meant pike, so they had to look elsewhere.
“With the water temperatures hovering on and around 52° F,” says Pete, “we figured the walleye would be a bit lethargic. That’s still pretty cold.”
“Trust us,” continues Ang, “we tried casting and dragging plastics, but none of them would work”.
The jig and live minnow was the ticket.
With the use of the latest and greatest technology on their sonar, the boys dialed in a perfect depth range that they could stick to for the entire day. The result was 20 to 30 picture-perfect walleye, 15 to 20 pike (when they ventured too shallow...they just couldn’t help their foolish selves), a gorgeous whitefish, and get this: a white sucker. Pretty good fishing for one day!
“Unfortunately, we didn’t get a whole lot of filming time up at Buck Lake Lodge,” says Angelo, “but it speaks volumes as to just how good their fishing is. With our very limited shooting time, we still came out with what we feel is an amazing episode.”
CONTACT BUCK LAKE LODGE & OUTPOSTS
Winter: Lake Obakamiga, Box 616 RR#2, Victoria Harbour, ON Canada L0K 2A0
Phone: +1 (705) 534-1991
Summer: Lake Obakamiga, Box 577 Hornepayne, ON Canada P0M 1Z0
Phone: +1 (807) 868-2208
Toll Free: 1-888-366-0712
Buck Lake Lodge...it’s yet another Algoma diamond in the rough.